Is there anyone out there that agrees with this?

By KathyJ ยท 14 replies
Jan 19, 2010
  1. I was in a computer store today just checking out the new computers. I had already made my mind up that I wasn't going to purchase a new one until I have to but I thought I would just see what is out there now just for the fun of it. I was checking a few out and a sales clerk came up to me and asked if they could help me. I told her my computer was nearly 10 years old and I was checking out what is out there today. We talked about Windows 7, new computers, etc. and she told me, "Ma'am, technology back then was built to last. I wouldn't buy a computer today until I had to. Printers that you purchase today maybe will last for 2 years." So she was telling me I would be better off keeping my old one rather than purchase a new computer today. The way everything else is today, I wouldn't be surprised. I'm not going to purchase another right now anyway but I was just curious, is there anyone out there that agrees with this?
  2. neowing

    neowing TS Booster Posts: 295

    I am not sure. However, most of tech spot helper need to know what kind of computer you have right now and what do you do with your computer ( I mean if you are using computer for Internet or gaming or Design or etc). So I think you should post about your computer and wait expert to answer your questions.

  3. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,264

    For general computing a Pentium 3 or 4 (or earlier) would do pretty much what a new build would do....just slower. If speed isn't a concern then to a degree, an upgrade shouldn't be either.
    Newer tech offers better connectivity, and of course all the other new tech is a good fit for the later builds. Technological change or vicious circle ?
    Where older tech falls down is software. As the operating systems change then support for earlier versions (ME, NT, 98, 2000, XP...) ceases. Why ? Well, who would buy Windows 7 or 8 if XP suited them just fine?
    A newer OS will then probably require a upgrade in system resources, better system resources mean more sophisticated add-on's and software suites, better software etc...

    Having said that. Most systems that I refurbish are 6-10 years old and quite happily chug away with no more than the occasional harddrive replacement or power supply transplant due to old age if nothing else. These are primarily used for email and web surfing, playing movies or music and word processing, tasks they are still well capable of performing- that hasn't changed. Unfortunately the withdrawal of OS support will junk the machines before they expire through hardware failure.
  4. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +421

    Probably true about the printers though, new ones seem to not be very good unless you spend a lot of money. But I think you need to go back about 15 years before you get to printers that last a long time - on that note printers were a lot more expensive then.

    The hardware for the internal components on computers really hasn't changed much in reliability.
  5. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,010   +2,536

    Probably Not......

    Well, they don't build cars like they used to either. Back in the 50's, heavy metal had an entirely different connotation. Well yesiree, if you got a good one, you might get almost a hundred thousand miles out of it, not that the body wouldn't be all rusted out 5 years before that happened.

    I suppose if you want to type school papers, you could grab an old Commodore 64. This supposes that you could still find a printer to hook up with it, or maybe transfer the files to another more modern machine via floppy disc.

    In 2010, a ten year old machine is approaching the point where it could be struggling to load all the information on a modern web page. Not to mention the fact that, because of the filing system you may not be able to take advantage of the high capacity hard drives available today. Most modern modern users use their machines to stream video, plus store vast collections of photos, movies, and data. This is especially true with a family of users on the same machine.

    That the obsolescence period is shrinking dramatically is a given. But, if you talk to most people on this tech oriented site, a computer will be long replaced before it ever wears out or becomes obsolete.

    Computers are also a great deal cheaper today. I liken this to the fact that you can go to Walmart and buy a "Mr. Coffee" for about 15 bucks. You can also buy a "commercial quality" Bunn, for a 100. Given that the Mr. Coffee will last 5 years or so, it would take 30+ years for you to break even on the Bunn. And hey, all either one is required to do is boil water. So, you can probably buy 2 or 3, or possibly more computers with what you paid for the one you have. Add it all up and it says that Best Buy should screen their sales staff better.
  6. hrlow2

    hrlow2 TS Rookie Posts: 136

    If you haven't already, you could increase your RAM and install a faster(7200 rpm) hard drive for a good performance increase.
    Older machines had a 5400 rpm drive that is slow by comparison, and if the original, could be close to its end.
    My "newest" machine is 7 years old and does just fine. P4 3.0GHz HT CPU, 1GB RAM, and 80GB HD.
  7. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,010   +2,536

    Nobody actually said that you had to stop using the old one just because you buy another one. But seriously, 10 years + old is teetering on the edge of the flea market table.

    Then there is the,"who cares if it still works, I'm sick of looking at it", factor to consider.

    I just replaced my 10 year old (and working perfectly) Pioneer AV receiver with a new one, (same brand). This so that I could have some actual digital inputs and interface with the new flat screen TVs. This was combined with building a small new computer with HDMI output on the motherboard. So new stuff was needed to produce a cohesive system with new tech.
  8. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,690   +96

    Another dimension which needed to be considered is that, technology is an 'evolutionary' thing; it doesn't just happen, with each step things change and/or improve, hence the cycle of continuous change. Perhaps if it wasn't for evolution in knowledge, we'd still be believing that everything revolved around the earth (as per Claudius Ptolemaeus), point is it was increase in knowledge through research and observations which made Ib-nl-Haythem first challenge the Greek notion of everything going around the earth and not going around the earth i.e. around equant. Consequently all observational data gathered by researchers in that period helping Newton write Principia Mathmetica. The story is bit off topic but the principle stands i.e. evolution.
  9. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,010   +2,536

    Belief in the "Flat Earth" Forever.........(In the Valley of the Kings)

    While everything you say is undoubtedly true, these things were discovered by extraordinary individuals, able to think well beyond their own mortal boundaries, while in fact, most of us are more concerned with the mundane.

    For instance, the average only child thinks the earth revolves around them.

    The average Techspot member thinks the world revolves around his or her computer.

    With this is mind, my recommendation for KathyJ and hrlow2, is to hang on to those "heirlooms" for all you're worth, and start saving for your pyramids immediately.
    Thus, "when your charms are all undone", your servants can take those bad boys (or girls) apart, and place their parts into canopic jars, so that they may soldier on for you in the afterlife.

    Verily, it does give one pause to marvel, as to just how many decimal places Pi could be calculated, given all eternity.............

    Oh dear, I think I've brought a tear to mine own eyes.
  10. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,690   +96

    lol ....... my world is bit more complex, but then again we live on spaceship earth hence limiting our options :)
  11. hrlow2

    hrlow2 TS Rookie Posts: 136

    Personally, I don't, and won't, throw my "friends" to the curb,just because they get a little age on them. I have some age,myself.
    I know how I would feel.
    After a while,taking the time to get them set up the way you like and getting familiar with them,just so you can start over with a new one?
  12. strategic

    strategic TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,020

    A 10 year old computer may be old, but then, maybe not. Finding security software for it is probably hard but for general computing, I'll bet it does the job just fine.
    For the most part, newer electronics need morea attention, if they're taken care of properly, they'll last a long time. Newer electronics need to have surge protection while older stuff can handle a surge or 2 and laugh about it.
  13. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,690   +96

    lol thats a new one but i like it :)
  14. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,010   +2,536

    Actually my choice to build a new computer has no basis in "kicking anything to the curb" because it's old. I enjoy trying my hand as a "system integrater", I love to shop, and I love to buy myself shiny new toys. For verily it is said, "he who dies with the most toys wins", and I'm starting to get enough age on me that I base purchasing decisions on that axiom. Plus, although building a computer is a relatively simple task, I still get the biggest kick out of watching it "come to life".

    And hrlow2, at least I still scare myself when I start calling machines "friends", but if you were to tell me that you believe that they're more loyal than people, I would agree with you wholeheartedly.

    If there is anything still left of the original concept of this thread, I would make an example of Gigabyte motherboards, and the improvements they've made in the area of longevity. I'm thinking that their "Ultra-Durable" models of mobo, might be around longer than some of the old school garbage you've been crowing about.

    So, human nature being what it is, the paradigms are somewhat limited. You can choose to; hate the Joneses, ignore the Joneses, keep up the the Joneses, or grab life by the shorts and be the Joneses.

    Or do what I suggested in the first place and start saving for your pyramid.
  15. yangly18

    yangly18 TS Rookie Posts: 217

    I wouldn't necissarily agree with that statement. Although computers today seem to go bad all the time, you have to look at the changes that have been made as far as the internet. Back in the day there were viruses too, and worms, BUT today there are millions of them, and they are all over the place. Computers today will last just as long as an older computer if:

    You don't smash it, spill liquids on it, etc.

    You use protection against viruses/maleware/spyware

    Use correct power down proceedure

    Don't overclock to the point of breakage

    Use compatable components

    I'm sure there's more I can throw in there, but not to mention computers today are usually faster in processing information, and they still arn't that expensive. I did notice you said the lady mentioned that PRINTERS go bad after 2 years, in that case I would agree, but that depends on HOW MUCH ITS USED :D
    Also, getting new ink for them is expensive, I'd rather just go somewhere local where I can print out what I need for free, or a minimal fee than get my own printer.

    New computers are just as reliable as old computers as long as they dont have viruses. Also not to mention that since computers have been through a major upgrade in the last 10 years there will be more chances at failure since many of the components are much more complex than before. Although, like someone said above, if you are not concerned about hardcore performance and you have the extra time, old computers work just as fine.
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